Cricket minnows Oman smash Ireland in World Cup Qualifier

Cricket minnows Oman smash Ireland in World Cup Qualifier
2 min read
21 June, 2023
Ireland are the fourth highest ranking team in the cricket World Cup qualifiers but have now suffered an embarrassing defeat to Oman.
Oman scored a monumental win over Ireland in the ODI game [Getty]

Cricket minnows Oman made history on Monday after defeating Ireland in a World Cup Qualifiers match in Zimbabwe, their first win over a test nation in a One Day International (ODI).

Oman's five-wicket win puts them in second place in Group B on the same points as cricket powerhouse Sri Lanka. As a team, they are ranked 20th in the world.

Only two of the 10 teams taking part in the three-week qualifier tournament will play in the World Cup, held in India in October and November.

The on-form sultanate play the UAE on Wednesday with Oman chasing 227 runs at the time of publication. 

Oman captain Zeeshan Maqsood, who scored 59 runs in the game, said it was an "honour" to lead the sultanate to their first victory over Ireland, the fourth highest ranked team in the tournament.

"If we continue like this, some more results will be in our favour," he said according to AFP.

"It was a collective and combined performance, which we need to beat a good side. We came here to go there (to India) and play."

Ireland captain Andy Balbirnie said the shock defeat was "disappointing" but also "didn't take us by surprise".

"It's a long tournament. We need to get back into it pretty quickly," he said.

Oman and the UAE - which has also hosted domestic Pakistan games - have poured resources into cricket in recent years and together hosted the T20 W0rld Cup in 2021 amid the Covid-19 crisis.

On the day of the Ireland game, Pankaj Khimji, head of Oman Cricket, urged his team to continue their recent successes.

"Today, it is a new Oman. It is no longer the squad of 2005 and 2009 when the players faced totally a new ball game while playing abroad as we did not even have a turf pitch then," he said, according to